Our Advice

Does your baby have colic? If your baby has colic, don’t worry you are not on your own.

What is colic?

Colic is the most common feeding problem experienced by babies. It occurs in 1 in 4 babies. Colic isn’t an illness and won’t harm your baby’s health or have any long-term effects, but it’s a tough thing to go through for all involved – babies and parents. The most common sign of colic is that your baby cries uncontrollably for several hours at a time. Your little one is considered colicky by diagnosing with the rule of 3:

  • If it begins around the first 3 weeks of life

  • Lasts at least 3 hours a day

  • Occurs at least 3 days a week

  • Continues for at least 3 weeks

  • Seldom lasts longer than 3 months

Why does my baby not stop crying?

The reason your baby may be suffering from colic is not fully understood but possible causes may be that they have trapped wind, they may also have sensitivities to milk as your baby’s digestive system is very small and still developing.

What can I do to help?

The following are some things that you can try which may help comfort your baby:

  • Create a soothing atmosphere by turning off the TV and radio, play soft music or white noise like the sound of the tumble dryer, hoover or washing machine.

  • Give your baby a warm bath while gently massaging their tummy in a clockwise position.

  • Try different winding techniques and use the one that works best for your baby.

  • Push your baby in a pram or place them in a car seat and go for a drive.

  • Swaddling your baby in a warm blanket can work wonders when settling a colicky baby

  • If you are breastfeeding try and limit foods like chocolate, caffeine or spicy food.

  • If you are bottlefeeding and symptoms persist, speak to your healthcare professional. A specialised formula may be advised.

When will it end?

Symptoms should subside by the time your baby is 3 or 4 months old, by this time their digestive system will have matured, however this can seem like a long way away! Try and get some help from your partner, family and friends when you need to. Your public health nurse or doctor may also be able to help if symptoms persist.